From Rhode Island’s mudboy we received the envelope decorated with a blue line drawing of a flying cat. This arrived last October. Inside there’s a really nice seven-incher pressed in blue vinyl and housed in a silk-screened cover by mudboy which shows off his Ukiyo-e influence with its large and bold blocks of colours. Contents of mudboy’s MUDMUX Volume I (DNT RECORDS DNT035) are reworkings of songs by other recording artists, but “remixed and generally muxed-up by mudboy”. Extreme Animals are on the A-side with a lively percussive workout called ‘Lil John Carpenter Tribute Song’, while Non Marie Dark and DarkDarkDark perform ‘Come Home’ on the flip, a dirge-like wail aided by the accordion of Alec K Redfearn. Two cassettes also; mudboy Beats III: Metal USA! offers some delirious examples of what happens when our man gets his hands on a drum sequencer and some live electronic devices (nightmarish bubbling lo-fi noise which nearly veers out of control). The other item is housed in an elaborate fold-out piece of screenprinting depicting a gigantic dog, a flailing baby, and a barefoot stoned-out cyclops dude clasping a small amplifier. The only legible part is ‘5608’, which may be the title, or name of band, or even simply the date of recording. Nor am I able to read the near-obliterated credits on the back, but it may be a live tape featuring NZ player Stefan Neville on guitar and keyboards, David somebody on melodica and guitar, and mudboy playing percussion. The audible contents give nothing away, but are by turns far more melodic and spaced-out than the claustrophobic noise and beats tape. About as marginal as it gets; for hard-core fans of deep underground malarkey.
The latest offering from Jupiterdogs arrived in November 2008. As you can see Take It To The Sun, Take It To The Earth (PALIMPSEST RECORDINGS PR10) comprises three 3-inch CDRs mounted on a decorated card. In playing time, it amounts to a full-length CD – nearly one hour of music from the Jupesters. The keynote here seems to be ‘indecipherable’ – musical instruments (perhaps) being abused and maltreated through bashing, scraping and plucking actions, sometimes delivered with a near-feral attack. On the first disc, the introverted angst of their previous outings has been replaced by a poisonous, vengeful anger, spread across two spiky tracks of monotonous obsessive clattering; the music is directed like a slingshot full of rusty nails in your face. The second disc refused to play for me, while the third disc contains a slow sustained piece of deep-down electronic amplifier brooding, electric guitars (perhaps) being played in unnatural ways to combine an attempt at a Mississippi delta slide with jangly, nerve-shredding picking where the fingers are attached to all the wrong parts of the guitar’s neck. Those expecting sweet tunes amongst all this fearful atonality had best steer clear, but so had lovers of Bailey-influenced guitar improvisation; the beautiful naïve artlessness of Jupiterdogs is cut from quite a different cloth, and one suspects the players would have been too anti-social, willful and just plain ornery to even consider taking part in the group pairings of a Company Week.